Month: September 2007

A decadent Saturday – Selfridge’s Oyster Bar

My sister and her fiancée were visiting this past weekend and we wanted to do something nice. We ended up being extremely decadent indeed, starting in the morning at Ladurée in Harrod’s, moving onto the Oyster & Champagne Bar in Selfridge’s for smoked salmon and champagne and finishing with a beautiful Japanese meal in Sushi-Say in Willesden. It was more decadent than I have ever been in my life, I really must make more of a habit of these little treats. Occasionally, of course ;) I am going to talk about Sushi-Say in it’s own post later as it deservss it’s own space and I have a few pictures of the beautiful food to share. I only had macarons in Ladurée and I’ve done that before so we’ll get back to that at another time. For now, I want to talk about the smoked salmon in Selfridge’s. I have passed by the Oyster and Champagne bar in the Selfridge’s Food Hall countless times but it never appealed to me, it seems quite clinical thrown to …

Parisian Local Food Market

While in Paris, I wandered into a local weekly food market by chance. It was fantastic and depressing. Why don’t we have these? Local people buying their weekly groceries, it was so relaxed and bountiful. The quality was fantastic and prices very reasonable. If we had one here people would travel miles to it. There were several fruit and veg stalls, a few cheese stalls, fish stalls, a charcuterie, boucherie, really everything you would need. The supermarket nearby was empty, why would you go? And to top it, it was surrounded by lovely food shops, 2 charcuteries, a chocolatiers, a boulangerie, to name but a few. Bring back proper food markets to the UK, I say! There should be one in every town.

What is everyone else doing?

I participated in my first DMBLGIT competition, run at Spittoon Extra. The winners were fantastic and well deserved, an inspiration really. Running with Tweezers has run a Summer Soup Challenge. There’s some beautiful entries (54 in all). I will definitely be trying some, particularly, confetti gazpacho at Kalyn’s Kitchen, an Asian spin on Matzoh Ball Soup from Arfi at HomeMadeS and Married with Dinner‘s Watermelon Gazpacho. Heidi at 101 Cookbooks has posted a recipe for amazing looking vegetarian lentil burgers that is begging to be tried. Haalo at Cook Almost Anything published a recipe for Ajo Blanco, a white gazpacho made with almonds, bread and garlic that I sought out in Spain and that I am very keen to try and make. It was published in March but I only found it recently through Becks & Posh who raved about it. Ever have leftover egg whites? I did after recent making carbonara. David Lebowitz has published several recipes for using them, including a favourite, macarons. At Eat my Globe, a foodies journey through middle age, …

Homemade Pizza

I love good pizza. Everyone has their own take on what that is but for me it has a thin crispy base, good sauce (NOT tomato purée!) and simple but good quality toppings. It can be quite hard to find this so I like to make my own occasionally. It takes alot of time but there’s a real sense of satisfaction in doing it from scratch. Dissolving the yeast, seeing the dough take shape, and kneading & kneading it until the dough becomes stretchy and shiny and ready for a stint of relaxation while you make your sauce. It’s an arduous process, but one I am happy to indulge in when I have the time. And sometimes when I don’t, like last Saturday. I had been preparing for a few days, stocking up on fresh yeast, Italian 00 flour, too many cheeses and various types of meat. A few words about these, Italian 00 flour is a must, if only because it’s what Italians use and they know what they’re doing. It’s a fine grind …

Fast moving food – Potato, leek, broad bean & roquefort pie

So, we’re moving at the moment. I hate it and can’t wait until we’re finished and installed in our new home. It would probably be fine if it were not for my 200 odd cookbooks, 100’s of other books, cd’s… and all the other stuff that I have been hoarding for all of these years. I am being quite brutal and throwing lots of things towards the charity shop but none of the cookbooks! They must all stay. To do this successfully, I need to eat speedy food. I am unwilling to compromise on taste so for the next few weeks expect to see quick pasta dishes, salads and pie! Open pies especially, so quick, with shop bought pastry it’s like making a fancy baked open sandwich. One pie I love to make is potato, leek, broad bean & roquefort pie. It’s so easy and the amounts I give you here you can change depending on which ingredients you favour more. I often make this with caramelised onions but time is of the essence so …

Ode to a sausage roll!

A Ginger Pig sausage roll to be precise. I popped in to the Ginger Pig on Moxon St, Marylebone on one of my recent trips to the Sunday farmer’s market. It’s a wonderful old-school butchers and their pies and sausage rolls always looked amazing. So, I had to have one. At £3 a pop they seem pricey, but really, I could barely eat one by myself! They are huge and packed with juicy sausage meat, so intensely flavoursome with loads of pork fat. The pastry is crisp and buttery, really beautiful. It’s an indulgence! Try one some time :) The Ginger Pig, Borough Market, London SE1 and 8-10 Moxon Street, London W1

The Famous 4 Meme

I have been tagged for this meme by Margaret from Kitchen Delights and thought, why not?! Could be fun. Annemarie from Ambrosia & Nectar, Katie from Apple & Spice have already completed theirs. So, now it’s just me and Holler from Tinned Tomatoes. 4 Jobs I’ve held: I work in New Media now as a Project Manager but I’ve had a few jobs in my time between summer jobs and jobs at university so I’ll stick to the eclectic :) Library Assistant I worked in the library at university for two years shelving books mainly. I worked 4 hour shifts, and loved it as it meant I was pottering in and out of bookshelves all the time. As a science student studying physiology I didn’t have much exposure to the Arts or Humanities so enjoyed looking at and flicking through the books to see what they were all about. Cleaner in a psychiatric ward/school in Munich, Germany Student summer job when I was 20. We went to Munich for the summer and lots of us …

Dublin, briefly & Electric Picnic

How could I resist an indie music festival named after a food event? I couldn’t. My two passions, almost rolled into one. In a name anyway. Off I went after my trip to Paris to Stradbally, Laois in Ireland for Electric Picnic, the boutique music festival. I was really excited. I was going with some old friends I don’t see often enough to what promised to be one of the most fun festivals I had been to. Lots of bands I love – Clap your Hands Say Yeah, !!!, Iggy & the Stooges, Sonic Youth, Jarvis, the Good, the Bad & the Queen, My Brightest Diamond, the Go! Team, Ratatat… the list goes on and on. I was also assured of lots of late night dancing. Woohoo! I landed in Dublin on Thursday afternoon rather shook after my late night return on the eurostar. I whizzed around camping shops (yes, sigh, camping) buying a sleeping bag, wellies (in Ireland it’s sure to rain) and other random essential bits and bobs. I was pleased to see …